Police Release Video of Fatal Crash Involving Self-Driving Car

Police Release Video of Fatal Crash Involving Self-Driving Car

Martín Di Felice

Police in Tempe, Arizona, on Wednesday released dashcam video of the Sunday night crash in which a self-driving Uber SUV struck and killed a pedestrian.

The video, as released, shows the exterior view of the Uber vehicle leading up to the collision, but does not include the crash "due to the graphic nature of the impact," according to a police statement on Twitter.

It also shows the interior view of the vehicle operator leading up to the crash, which resulted in the first death involving a fully autonomous test vehicle.

Uber immediately suspended all road-testing of such autos in the Phoenix area, Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Toronto. The testing has been going on for months as automakers and technology companies like the ride-hailing service compete to be the first with cars that operate on their own.

The Volvo was in self-driving mode with a human backup driver at the wheel when it hit 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg as she was walking a bicycle outside the lines of a crosswalk, police said. She died at a hospital.

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi expressed condolences on his Twitter account and said the company is working with local law enforcement on the investigation.

The National Transportation Safety Board, which makes recommendations for preventing crashes, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which can enact regulations, sent investigators.

Tempe police Sgt. Ronald Elcock said local authorities haven’t drawn any conclusions about who is at fault but urged people to use crosswalks. He told reporters at a news conference Monday the Uber vehicle was traveling around 40 mph when it hit Helzberg immediately as she stepped on to the street.

Neither she nor the backup driver showed signs of impairment, he said.

Warning: The police tweet including the video is below. Please note that some viewers may find it disturbing.